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Cod Almighty | Diary

Calm down Mr Apples

20 October 2017

Wicklow Diary writes: According to an unverified Twitter source, former Crystal Palace left-back Jason Akiotu is currently on trial at GTFC. As social media rumours go, this one makes sense. Town's signing of Reece Hall-Johnson and the loaning of Diallang Jaiyesimi is typical of a well established pattern in English football. The squeeze from the Premier League spending on foreign players means Palace and Norwich youth are more likely to end up in Town's first team than their own. We are their Boston United.

It raises an interesting question at a time when the club is renewing its fundraising efforts for the youth system. A cynic might ask why not just close our academy and continue to feed off the players that churn from the bigger clubs? Of course, that would remove the chance that we win the talent lottery in the shape of a John Oster or Ryan Bennett. Like any lottery, the financially prudent thing to do would be to keep your money in your pocket and not base the business plan on a piece of, ahem, 'football fortune'. Personally, I think looking at youth development in such cold terms would be overlooking the huge part it can play in knitting the club to the community and benefitting both. 

To return to social media, the Town support relished Tuesday's victory over Cheltenham in full. Afterwards, I was able to pin down the reasons for my dislike of the Chelts. It irritated me that recent successes had given them the belief they were somehow the big cheese. You know when some idiot doesn't know the roundabout rules and gives you the finger when you almost broadside them? That's the type of indignation I held towards them. After Tuesday night it's mirror, signal, maneouvre. There's a bit of balance restored and we can all be friends again.

Tomorrow, we're off to Morecambe. Last season, there was anything but balance in the fixture when we wore red shorts with our home shirt. We've injury doubts over Mitch Rose and Paul Dixon. Morecambe are without striker and Buckley III-slayer Kevin Ellison through suspension. Russell Slade is in no doubt about Morecombe boss Jim Bentley's ability to overcome this loss. During his Friday press conference, Russ referred to Bentley as "The League Two Wenger." Morecambe is also an "incredibly difficult place to go" apparently. That's Morecambe guys, perched atop 21st position in ye olde fourth division. I hated it when that manager we had bigged up the opposition.

Three articles to plug before I go. Rich Lord has written a lovely piece on Shaun Pearson (wipes tear) for Wrexham fanzine Fearless in Devotion. Chris Fisher also had some timely reflections after our win at Cheltenham. Finally, a fluffed quiz answer prompted Ron Counte to compile his thoughts on the heights of the 92 league grounds. We're bottom of the League of course but Southampton may call for a steward's enquiry if they visit and notice our goalmouth mounds.